Day 220: echinacea

Daily details from the garden to bring you inspiration throughout the year

Coneflowers,  Echinacea purpurea , at RHS Wisley

Coneflowers, Echinacea purpurea, at RHS Wisley

Echinacea can be a bit of a stinker to get through winter, certainly on heavy clay soils, where I find they’ll cope with cold conditions, but not wet. The answer is to open up the soil by adding organic matter, but you don’t want to make it too rich for these big daisies, used as they are to baking in the relatively poor ground of the American prairies. Besides which, the lusher their growth, the more delicious they’ll be to molluscs – the slimy ones had a good go at mine this year, though a few have just about made it through. Some autumn soil prep and a winter mulch this year will be in order, then probably reading them bed-time stories till they start to shoot again in spring.

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Hello! I’m Andrew, gardener, writer, photographer, and owner of a too-loud laugh, and I’m so pleased you’ve found your way to Gardens, weeds & words. You can read a more in-depth profile of me on the About page, or by clicking this image.